Last Lap for Relay
Ms. Jo-Ann Morris-Brady has been a Spanish teacher at SHHS, as well as faculty advisor to Relay for Life, with help from fellow teacher Patrick Keaveney. They bravely took charge in 2011, when the event was still 24 hours long (instead of 12 as it is now), because they both loved the community and supported the fundraising objective. All money raised — in 2019, more than $30,000 — goes directly to the American Cancer Society.
Relay for Life takes place on the Strath Haven Middle School track, starting at 10 a.m. and ending at 10 p.m. For this big day (April 27 this year,) students come together and form teams whose members take turns walking laps on the track to earn donations from people who have pledged to support their efforts. Also, throughout the day they fundraise by performing some type of activity (e.g. selling chances to guess the amount of candy in a container, creating henna tattoos, face painting, and selling baked goods).
Prior to the event, money is raised by students in mini-events such as the art auction that is located in the high school library, the powderpuff football game, Haven Heart Throb, and the lemonade sales that take place at the WSSD elementary schools.
There are monthly planning meetings for the big event and to organize earlier fundraisers. Two years ago, student captain Matthew McAndrews held the reins when Strath Haven got to the million dollar cumulative goal the school has been reaching for since the event began. The energy continued, and this year’s event captains Dana Hubbell, Ava Fowler, and Abby Macpherson are proud that the student-run effort raised more than $30,000 in its last year before passing the baton to Mini-Thon.
Mini-Thon will take place during the upcoming school year. Modeled on the Pennsylvania State University’s famous fundraiser known as “Thon,” the event is a dance marathon that will be held in the high school gym. Proceeds from this event go straight to Four Diamonds, helping conquer children’s pediatric cancer. Plans are still evolving, but some additional Mini-Thon fundraisers such as a calendar caption competition as well as flower-grams are planned. Good luck and much success to new Mini-Thon leader Lilian Liu!